Last September, at the Colorado State Fair, a stunning piece of artwork entitled “Théâtre D’opéra Spatial” took home the blue ribbon in the digital arts category. It’s easy to see why — it looks like it belongs on the walls of the Louvre. Sure, it wasn’t created using a paintbrush, but there is tremendous skill involved in digital art of this calibre.
Except that the creator, Jason M. Allen, used an artificial intelligence platform called Midjourney to produce it. Midjourney turns lines of text into convincing graphics — in this case, a vignette of a futuristic space opera. Allen’s fellow competitors (and much of the art world) were not happy. From their point of view, using AI was cheating. But the organizers of the fair stood by their decision, as the rules clearly stated that the work was to be of an “artistic practice that uses digital technology as part of the creative or presentation process.” AI fits the bill.
But this isn’t the first time that technology has disrupted the art world, and it probably won’t be the last, either. Think about it: the printing press, the camera, the typewriter, the computer…they all replaced or augmented the previous way of doing things in an artistic space. The trick will be to learn how to use AI to make art that is still challenging, authentic, unique and worthy of the theory and skill behind it.
Midjourney is just one of so many platforms artists can access to integrate AI into their work. There are myriad image generators, as well as AI tools for video editing and processing, short- and long-form writing (everything from articles to novels and creative non-fiction), logo and brand development, and so much more. But before you panic, creatives, the advancement of AI doesn’t have to mean the death of artistic industries. It does mean, however, learning to work with — rather than against — artificial intelligence tools to become even better at what you do. Who knows, you could even win your very own blue ribbon.


For fiction authors, there’s nothing more challenging than self-editing. You spend months (sometimes years!) writing your novel, and then you have to go back to the beginning to revise. It’s a daunting task — one that many, if not most, writers struggle with.

Enter Fictionary. This Vancouver-based tech startup, founded by bestselling author Kristina Stanley, uses SaaS-based, AI-powered software to help authors visualize their story arcs through automatic analysis, compare story elements, adjust pacing, remove characters and so much more (there are actually 38 Fictionary fundamental elements to use as a guide). “We’re on a mission to change the way books are edited and help all writers become world-class storytellers,” says Stanley. Fictionary is currently used in 48 countries and counting, with hundreds of success stories to their name.

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